definition - timber and stone act
Timber Culture Act of 1872, The Free Timber Act of 1878, and The Timber and Stone Act of 1878 all allowed public acquisition of federal timber land. Fraud was widespread and speculators obtained millions of acres of public land in spite of statutory prohibitions against speculation.
definition of Wikipedia
The Timber and Stone Act of 1878 (45th Congress, Sess. 2, ch. 151, 20 Stat.89) in the United States sold Western timberland for $2.50 per acre ($618/km²) in 160 acre (0.6 km²) blocks.
Land that was deemed 'unfit for farming' was sold to those who might want to 'timber and stone' (logging and mining) upon the land. The act was used by speculators who were able to get great expanses declared 'unfit for farming' allowing them to increase their land holdings at minimal expense.
In theory the purchaser was to make an affidavit that he was entering the land exclusively for his own use and that no association was to hold more than 160 acres (0.6 km²). In practice however, wealthy companies seeking to access natural resources semi-fraudulently circumvented the law by hiring individuals to purchase 160 acre (0.6 km²) lots which were then deeded to the company after a nominal compliance with the law. This was legal only in that companies complied with the letter or the law while brashly ignoring the spirit of it. Ultimately, said companies were able to obtain title up to twenty thousand acres (80 km²).
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MOUNT RAINIER AND AMERICAN SETTLEMENTINTRODUCTIONNational park managers have long understood that land uses outsideparks, indeed long distances from parks, can produce environmentalchanges inside park boundaries. There are so many interrelationshipsbetween one kind of land use and another that no mere politicalboundaries can completely insulate an area from the environmentalchanges occurring around it. Wildlife populations, fire ecology, scenicvistas, and even air quality are affected by changes in the land aroundMount Rainier National Park. Moreover, major land uses such as logging,the construction of the transcontinental railroads, and urbanizationhave shaped the political environment of Washington state. State andlocal politics, too, have had an important bearing on how the park wasadministered.The cultural setting of western Washington is integral to MountRainier National Park's historical development. This section focuses onthree salient features of this cultural setting: the timber industry,transportation links, and urbanization.
The timber industry became theleading sector in the regional economy as early as the 1850s andremained so well into the twentieth century. Transcontinental railroadsexerted enormous influence on the area's development in the 1880s andafter. The railroads in turn created the necessary conditions for therise of Seattle and Tacoma in the last twenty years of the nineteenthcentury.
The cities did more than any other factor to reshape people'sattitudes about the wilderness and the way they used it.THE TIMBER INDUSTRYEarly visitors to western Washington found that its wet climate hadproduced a lush growth of Douglas fir, hemlock, spruce, and cedar, fromthe slopes of the Cascades to the very edge of Puget Sound. Earlylumbermen recognized the region's economic potential as soon as theCalifornia gold rush created a market for lumber on the west coast. Theindustry began on the shores of Puget Sound in the early 1850s withCalifornia-owned sawmills erected at Port Ludlow, Port Blakely and PortMadison, and with a New England-owned sawmill built at Port Gamble. Thenew companies soon expanded on their coastal trade by finding markets inHawaii and around the Pacific Rim.
Approximately eighty percent ofinvestment in Washington Territory's economy in the 1860s and 1870s wentinto lumbering. Nevertheless, withoutrailroad connections to eastern markets the industry remained small incomparison to lumbering operations elsewhere in the nation.
Before thecoming of the railroads, one historian has written, 'northwest lumberwas something like Robinson Crusoe's pile of gold; there was lots ofit but it was worth very little since there was so little opportunity touse it.' The first major change in Washington's timber industry occurred withthe completion of the transcontinental Northern Pacific Railroad in1883. The railroad stimulated settlement, created local markets forlumber, and linked the Pacific Northwest to markets back east. Thesechanges also attracted new investment capital to the region,particularly from Midwestern lumber barons who faced dwindling suppliesof timber for their operations in the Great Lakes States. They foundWashington lands not only more heavily timbered per acre than what theywere used to, but far cheaper as well.
Making often fraudulent use ofthe Timber and Stone Act of 1878, lumber companies acquired hundreds ofthousands of acres of timberland from the public domain in the 1880s.The land grab by these lumber companies was an important spur to thecreation of Washington's first forest reserves in the 1890s. The center of lumbering in Washington shifted in these years from theupper Puget Sound region southward to Tacoma and westward to GraysHarbor.
Lumber interests built numerous branch railroads inland toexploit new timberlands. They were aided further by the introduction ofthe steam-powered donkey engine which could move logs farther and fasterthan the old ox-team and skid road method of logging. While the old millports continued to handle the waterborne lumber trade, these mostlyCalifornia-owned companies found themselves at a competitivedisadvantage with the new lumber companies which used the railroads toreach much wider markets. A second major change in Washington's lumber industry developed afterthe turn of the century as lumbermen began coming to grips with the factthat the state's timber supply was not limitless. The larger companiesbegan to seek a change from the 'cut-and-run' logging operations of thenineteenth century to less wasteful methods of timber harvesting basedlargely on economy of scale.
Symbolic of this transition was Midwesttimber magnate Frederick Weyerhaeuser's purchase in 1900 of 900,000acres of Washington timberland from the Northern Pacific's land grantholdings. In three and a half years Weyerhaeuser increased theWeyerhaeuser Timber Company's interests in western Washington to 1.3million acres. These huge holdings by one of the nation's leading timberbarons showed that the center of the timber industry had shifted fromthe Midwest to the Pacific Northwest. At the same time, lumbermen beganto work in cooperation with government foresters to address what wereseen as the two biggest imperatives for improved efficiency in thetimber industry: protection of forests from wildfire and reform of theproperty tax system. To this end, lumbermen and foresters formed theWashington Forest Fire Association in 1908 and the Western Forestry andConservation Association in 1909, and supported the establishment of aForestry School at the University of Washington in 1907. Efficiency was also the watchword of the new conservation movement.Led by Gifford Pinchot, forestry 'professionals' sought to manageforests as though they were crops, harvesting trees when they were'ripe,' protecting stands against fire and disease, guarding againstdeforestation and soil erosion. Government forestry initially focused onresearch and conceived of its role as an advisory one; after the turn ofthe century, however, the Forestry Bureau (later the U.S.
ForestService) began to concern itself primarily with the management of forestreserves (national forests). In Washington, as elsewhere in the West,leaders in the timber industry generally supported conservation as partof their drive to resolve problems of overcompetition and supply.Opposition to the forest reserves came mainly from smaller concerns aswell as agricultural and mining interests. The groundswell of suspicionby westerners toward federal control of resources reached a peak duringthe administration of President Theodore Roosevelt, in the first decadeafter Mount Rainier National Park was established.All of the land included in the park today was previously set asideas forest reserve or national forest land. The Pacific Forest Reserve,proclaimed on February 20, 1893, formed roughly a square thirty-fivemiles on a side, with the summit of Mount Rainier on its western edge. Asubsequent presidential proclamation on February 22, 1897 changed thename of the reserve to the Mount Rainier Forest Reserve and greatlyenlarged its boundaries to the west and south. By the time Mount Rainier National Park wasestablished in 1899, the timber industry was already shaping westernWashington's cultural landscape in ways that reached far beyond theextent of actual logging operations. Forest lands throughout the CascadeMountains were being surveyed, purchased, taxed, protected from fire,and placed in reserves for future logging operations and for watershedprotection.
These myriad forest activities created a political andeconomic climate which continued to affect land use around and eveninside the national park after it was established.THE RAILROADSRailroads shaped the cultural setting of Mount Rainier in a verydifferent way than the timber industry. Their primary significance wasin binding the Pacific Northwest more closely to the national economy.They not only brought a flood of new settlers to Washington and carriedWashington's products to eastern markets, but their advent encouraged aninflux of investment capital into the Pacific Northwest as well. Therailroads themselves required great concentrations of capital;consequently, the railroad companies wielded enormous political andeconomic power.
The railroads were engines of economic growth in theirown right, consuming locally-produced timber and coal and employinglabor in railroad construction. They evenhad the ability, through their popular advertising posters andbrochures, to mold public attitudes toward the national parks. Finally, branch lines affected land use andsettlement patterns in the vicinity of Mount Rainier.Washington's railroad history began in 1853, when the territory'sfirst governor, Isaac I. Stevens, journeyed west to take up his new postin Olympia. Stevens actually wore three hats when he came west: besidesgovernor, he was Superintendent of Indian Affairs and leader of thesurvey of the northern route for a transcontinental railroad.
Stevens'role in making treaties with the Indians has been noted; histranscontinental railroad survey was one of four which Congressauthorized with a view to binding the far western territories to thenation and improving commercial access to Asia. Due to growing sectionaldifferences between North and South, however, the federal governmentdelayed action on the transcontinental railroad schemes until the CivilWar.
Congress then passed a law which chartered the Union Pacific andthe Central Pacific (1862) and the Northern Pacific (1864), the latterto follow the approximate route of the Stevens survey. The government provided the Northern Pacific with an enormous landgrant, the largest of any land-grant railroad, with which to pay forconstruction. The grant consisted of a strip of land 200 feet wide as aright of way, plus a swath of alternate sections along the railroad'sentire length, ten miles to either side of the railroad in the statesand twenty miles in the territories.
As the original charter providedthat the railroad would cross the Cascade Range by way of the YakimaRiver, the Northern Pacific's grant covered the area of the future MountRainier National Park. The company, however, could not claim title tothe land until it built the railroad and surveyed the lands, so to helpthe company out of financial straits Congress modified the charter suchthat the railroad could mortgage its land grant beforehand. When the Northern Pacific went bankrupt in1873 without having completed the line, Washington residents demandedthat the grant be rescinded so that the lands would be open for otheruses. But the Northern Pacific retained these lands, and popularresentment toward the railroad and the land grant continued to be verystrong for many years. The coming of the Northern Pacific Railroad spurred an intensecompetition between Tacoma and Seattle to be chosen for the terminalcity. Seattle lost. In 1870, the company modified its plan so that themain line would follow the Columbia River to Portland, utilizing anexisting twenty-mile railroad section belonging to the Oregon SteamNavigation Company, and then go north up the west side of the Cascadesto Tacoma, thereby acquiring an additional 2 million acres of timberland along the Columbia and Cowlitz valleys.
Though the line from the Columbia River toTacoma was completed before the company went bankrupt, it still did notlink the city by rail to the eastern United States or give Tacoma muchassurance that it would become the queen city in western Washington.Seattle fought hard in the 1870s to hold its ground as the most populoussettlement on Puget Sound, attempting among other things to build itsown railroad over the mountains to eastern Washington using localcapital and labor. Both cities had to wait nearly another decade fortheir long-sought railroad connection to the eastern United States.
In1881 railroad financier Henry Villard brought all the existing railroadsin Oregon together with the Northern Pacific and the Oregon Railway andNavigation Company and completed the transcontinental connection throughIdaho and Montana two years later.The completion of the Northern Pacific Railroad in 1883 began aperiod of economic boom in Washington state's history. This period waspunctuated by the completion of three more transcontinental lines overthe next two and a half decades. In the mid-1880s, the Union Pacificconstructed a branch from its main transcontinental line known as theOregon Short Line. This line went from Ogden, Utah through southernIdaho and eastern Oregon to the Columbia River, and made the UnionPacific the second transcontinental to reach the Pacific Northwest. In 1889, railroad magnate James J. Hillinaugurated a plan to construct another transcontinentalthe GreatNorthernfurther north, relying on many local feeder lines rather thanfederal land grants to help finance it. This time Seattle, with the helpof its short, pre-existing railroads, secured the prize of westernterminal.
The railroad's golden spike was driven at Stevens Pass in1893. In 1909, still one moretranscontinental line was built to Puget Sound: the Chicago, Milwaukee,and St.
Paul (known as the Milwaukee Road) completed the onlyelectrified line from the Midwest to Seattle. Later these fourtranscontinental railroadsNorthern Pacific, Union Pacific, GreatNorthern, and the Milwaukee Roadwould figure prominently as potentialfinanciers in the development of Mount Rainier National Park.Branch railroads were almost as important as the transcontinentals inshaping the cultural landscape around Mount Rainier. Branch lines linkedSeattle and Tacoma to coal fields in the Cascade foothills, stimulatedagricultural development, and determined the location of outlying farmcommunities. The rail connections between the Puget Sound cities and thecoal fields were essential to the development of western Washington'scoal mines, which supplied the steamships engaged in the timberindustry. Seattle businessmen were particularly aggressive in gettingrail connections to the coal beds, for it was largely coal exports whichenabled the small city of about 1,000 residents to maintain its leadover Tacoma in population growth during the late 1870s and early 1880s.The development of the Seattle and Walla Walla Railroad, built as far asRenton in the 1870s, gave the city an early advantage over Tacoma inattracting the coal trade, while the Columbia and Puget Sound Railroadpushed from Renton to the Black Diamond coal mines in 1882 and into theCedar River Valley in 1884.
Further south and nearer Mount Rainier, Northern Pacific surveyorsdiscovered coal beds in the Carbon River drainage in 1875 whilesurveying the Northern Pacific's eventual route over the Cascades viaStampede Pass. Years before it completed its main line over theCascades, the Northern Pacific built a branch line from Tacoma throughSouth Prairie to these coal beds, giving rise to the mining town ofWilkeson at the end of the line. As the Northern Pacific beganconstruction of its main line over the Cascades in 1884-85, itstimulated interest in the timber resources on the plateau between theWhite and Puyallup rivers and the clearing of bottomlands foragriculture. New towns sprang up along the railroad. Enumclaw wasplatted between 1885 and 1890 and had a population of nearly 500 by1900. The Orting townsite was filed in1887, while the platting of South Prairie and Buckley followed the nextyear.
The former enjoyed steady growth as the Puyallup Valley was turnedinto farmland; the latter thrived as fruit growers moved into the WhiteRiver Valley. Both the Northern Pacific and the Milwaukee Road took an interest indeveloping branch lines to tap the timber and mineral resources in theupper Nisqually and Cowlitz valleys. In 1890, the Milwaukee Roadincorporated the Puget Sound, Mt. Tacoma and Eastern Railroad Company,whose tracks were to run southeast from Tacoma past Lake Kapowsin to theNisqually River, and then up that valley toward Mount Rainier. As thedepression of 1893 delayed construction, the initiative temporarilypassed to the Northern Pacific, who sold an option on its extensivetimber holdings in the upper Nisqually and Cowlitz valleys to the St.Paul and Tacoma Lumber Company in exchange for that company's promise tobuild a line into the area. By 1896, this railroad, the Tacoma, Ortingand Southeastern Railroad, had reached the western shore of LakeKapowsin but was running into financial difficulty. The NorthernPacific, more interested in selling its timber holdings than gaining theadditional traffic over its system, backed the Puget Sound, Mt.
Tacomaand Eastern Railroad instead. In 1902,the so-called Tacoma and Eastern reached the new town of Eatonville, andtwo years later reached as far as Ashford, seven miles from the newnational park boundary.
These railroads were built primarily to exploit the timber and coalresources in the Cascade foothills rather than to profit from passengertraffic to Mount Rainier. However, the railroads were always looking foradditional sources of income for their lines and they were certainly notblind to the possibility of developing a lucrative tourist business, asthe Tacoma and Eastern's subsequent investments in Mount RainierNational Park would demonstrate. After 1899, the Northern Pacific wouldrepeatedly consider the possibility of extending its line from Wilkesoninto the northwest corner of the park with this purpose in view. Yet,defying expectations, Mount Rainier National Park never developed asclose a relationship to the major railroad companies as some otherwestern national parks did. The simple explanation for this is thattourism was incidental to the area railroads' main objectives, whichwere timber and coal. More importantly, however, the relationshipbetween the railroads and this national park was tempered by theproximity of Seattle and Tacoma.
These two cities would prove to be thereal driving forces of Mount Rainier National Park's development,providing local initiative for road and hotel construction and aconcentrated population of park users with an effective politicalvoice.THE CITIESSurpassing the influence of both Washington's timber industry and therailroads, the growth of a major metropolitan area on Puget Sound becamethe most important feature of Mount Rainier National Park's culturalsetting. The cities of Seattle and Tacoma provided much of the stimulusfor the establishment of Mount Rainier National Park and much of thecapital for its development. The cities' chambers of commerce boostedthe national park and involved themselves deeply in its administration,both through the state's senators and congressmen and through theirself-appointed Rainier National Park Advisory Board. Residents ofSeattle and Tacoma accounted for a large proportion of the park'svisitors, many of whom found a voice for influencing park administrationthrough outing clubs like The Mountaineers. The proximity of MountRainier National Park to the two cities made the park increasinglyoriented to weekend and day use by automobilists.
Arguably, therelationship of this park to its nearest cities was more pronounced thanthat of any other national park in the United States. Puget Sound citiesmade Mount Rainier into an icon.
In this 1878 etching the NorthernPacific Railway Company 's terminal city of Tacoma and Mount Rainierappear bound together by destiny. Only the tideflats separate the cityand the wilderness.Even before the establishment of Mount Rainier National Park,citizens of Seattle and Tacoma laid claim to the mountain as a symbol ofthe good life in the Pacific Northwest. The beauty of Puget Sound'sforests, lakes, tidewater, and mountains was a source of civic pride,and the image of Mount Rainier looming on the horizon beyond Seattle'sLake Washington or Tacoma's Commencement Bay was the most commonly usedsymbol of that pride. This is evident from the booster literature of theperiod. Boosters were the advertising professionals of their day; theywere sensitive to public tastes and attitudes.
Boosters for Seattle andTacoma, of which there was no shortage in the late nineteenth century,were probably not being unrealistic when they perceived westernWashington's scenery as a selling point for attracting immigrants,investment capital, and tourists to their cities. But Seattle's andTacoma's boosters were not simply describing the way things were; theywere crafting an image of their respective cities which would havefar-reaching consequences for the development of Mount Rainier NationalPark.In describing Mount Rainier's natural beauty, boosters generallyimplied that the mountain had a tonic effect on the cities' residentseven as they viewed it from Seattle or Tacoma. One offering by theSeattle Chamber of Commerce described the city's setting as'magnificent,' with the Cascades visible to the east and the Olympics tothe west, while to the south, 'even these grand features are dwarfed bythe stupendous Mt. A souveniredition by the Seattle Daily Times in 1900 asserted that PugetSound possessed greater scenic attractions than any place in thecountry, 'and it is very much doubted if any other spot on earth canexcel it.' Crawford & ConoverPublishers averred, 'The Scenery on Puget Sound, and especially that inthe immediate neighborhood of Seattle, is truly grand.
This adds not alittle to the pleasure of living in this favored region.' To drive home the connection between thePuget Sound cities and the mountain scenery, these works frequently useda view of Mount Rainier for their frontispiece. Scenic appreciation became such a motif inthe booster literature on Seattle and Tacoma that it eventually provokedthe otherwise incomprehensible book title, You Still Can't Eat Mt.Rainier! Seattle's appropriation of the mountain's image reached a climax withthe Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition of 1909.
The city's boostersintended to demonstrate that Seattle had arrived as one of the greatcities of the nation, and the AYP fair featured exhibitions on Alaskaand the Orient, underscoring Seattle's importance as a port city.Seattle invested $10 million on the buildings and grounds near LakeWashington, on what would become the University of Washington campus,and advertisements projected an image of a sophisticated 'Ivory City' ina land of Eden.Like Tacoma,Seattle tried to incorporate Mount Rainier into its own image. In 1909Seattle's Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition featured a view of MountRainier down Rainier Vista. Note that this is a composite photograph inwhich the mountain and forest appear closer to the city than they reallyare. (Frank Nowell photo courtesy ofUniversity of Washington, Negative No. Nowell 1040A.)On every hand stretch green lawns, shaded walks and glowing flowerbeds.
In every nook and corner the cactus dahlias, rhododendrons andflowering shrubs of the big woods of Washington are massed in profusion.Down Rainier Vista, across the sparkling blue waters of Lake Washington,majestic Mt. Rainier raises her massive head among the clouds, and overall, the blue sky and balmy air of summer on the Puget Sound make of theAlaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition a veritable fairyland. Rainier Vista formed the main axis of the fairgrounds, so that theview of Mount Rainier was framed by beautiful buildings down either sideof the promenade and the play of Geyser Fountain in the centerforeground.
This was the scene around which the whole complex wasoriented.While the 1890s and 1900s marked the heyday of Seattle'sidentification with Mount Rainier, Tacomans had been trying to lay claimto the mountain's symbolism for much longer. Indeed, their city took thename Tacoma from the Indian word for 'snow peak,' which it was said theIndians applied specifically to Mount Rainier, and much of the boosters'efforts to identify their city with Mount Rainier focused on getting thename of the mountain officially changed to Mount Tacoma. The effortdated from as early as 1873, though it reached fever pitch on threesubsequent occasions: in 1890 and 1917, when it was twice brought beforethe United States Geographic Board, and in 1925, when it briefly claimedthe attention of Congress. The desire of Tacomans to capitalize on thisname association was, of course, the real basis for the feud over themountain's name, even though the debate focused mainly on theauthenticity of the Indian name 'Tacoma' and the allegedly unpatrioticand prosaic flavor of the official name 'Rainier.' According to testimony given to the United States Geographic Board in1917, the founder of Tacoma, one Morton M. McCarver, decided to changethe name of his new townsite from Commencement City to Tacoma on theadvice of a visitor who had just read Theodore Winthrop's Canoe andSaddle and had been struck by Winthrop's use of the Indian name'Tacoma' for Mount Rainier.
McCarver'swhole object in founding Tacoma was to select a townsite which theNorthern Pacific Railroad would choose as its western terminus, andnaming his town for the region's most prominent landmark was shrewd.When the Northern Pacific did choose Tacoma, it too saw the advantage oflinking the mountain to the city by name association. In 1883, thecompany announced in its Northwest Magazine:The Indian name Tacoma will hereafter be used in the.publicationsof the Northern Pacific Railroad.instead of Rainier, which theEnglish Captain Vancouver gave to this magnificent peak when he exploredthe waters of Puget Sound in the last century. Ironically, the railroad's decision probably did more than anythingelse to perpetuate the use of 'Mount Tacoma' even while it gaveopponents their strongest evidence that the name change was apromotional scheme. The controversy over the mountain's name revealed how both PugetSound cities, through their symbolic use of the mountain's image, weretrying to claim a kind of proprietary interest in it.
It was symptomaticof the two cities' keen competition not only to become the mostwell-known city in the Pacific Northwest, but also to gain the bestrailroad connections, capture the most hinterland, and even (as will beseen in later chapters) secure the best access roads to Mount Rainier.Mount Rainier historian Arthur D. Martinson has written, 'in hindsight,it seems strange, perhaps silly, that Seattle and Tacoma spent aninordinate amount of time trying to prove which one owned Mt. Rainier.By the same token, beneath all the flimflam carried out in thenewspapers and other publications, the controversy showed some enduringwestern characteristics: local pride, developmental patterns and, aboveall, love of landscape.' That the nameof the mountain could stir such strong partisan feeling for so manyyears was proof of the boosters' claims that residents of Seattle andTacoma genuinely cherished their mountain scenery.The cities' boosters were right about the local inhabitants inanother respect: residents of Seattle and Tacoma came to view a trip tothe mountain as a favorite destination for country outings, and a climbto its summit as the supreme physical challenge in the region.
As lateas the 1880s, a trip to the mountain was still almost an expeditionaryevent, but in the last decade of the nineteenth century it evolvedfairly rapidly into a more commonplace activity. By the early twentiethcentury, the new national park was already experiencing the kind ofvisitor use pattern that would become more and more pronounced as timewent on: the weekend day-trippers had arrived.Aubrey Haines has told the history of Mount Rainier's pioneer climbsin Mountain Fever (1963), while Dee Molenaar has carried thestory into the twentieth century in The Challenge of Rainier(1971). Haines in particular has shown how early climbing expeditionsfostered local interest in the mountain and even contributed to thenational park movement. Many of the pioneer climbers subsequently playedimportant roles in the campaign to establish the park. Among the firstfour men to reach the summitHazard Stevens and Philemon B.
Van Trumpin August 1870, and Samuel F. Emmons and A.D. Wilson in October1870two of them, Van Trump and Emmons, actively supported the nationalpark campaign in the 1890s. Other pioneer climbers who later worked onbehalf of Mount Rainier's preservation included George B.
Bayley, whoreached the summit with Van Trump and James Longmire in 1883; John Muirand Edward S. Ingraham, who climbed the mountain in 1888; Ernest C.Smith, Fay Fuller, and Eliza R. Scidmore, who publicized their climbs inthe early 1890s with writings, lectures, and lantern slidepresentations; and Israel C. Russell and Bailey Willis, members of ageological party who were the first to traverse the mountain's summit in1896.Mount Rainier climbers formed the Washington Alpine Club in 1891, andits long-lived offspring, The Mountaineers, a few years later. Seattleand Tacoma newspapers followed the climbers' exploits with avidinterest.
The return of a mountain climbing party was cause for muchexcitement, as when Ingraham's party of thirteen men and women paradeddown the street in Tacoma in 1894, attired in alpine clothing andalpenstocks in hand, looking 'like a band of warriors.' According to a newspaper account, theIngraham party drew a crowd of one hundred or more onlookers, andobviously courting the attention, shouted in unison to the crowd:We are here!We are here!Right from the topOf Mount Rainier!Such antics seem silly one hundred years later, but they wereindicative of the unique cultural setting being formed in the PugetSound cities.
The local mountaineers would play a substantial role inthe national park's founding. Some of the individuals in the Ingrahamparty, for example, would shortly engage in a vigorous debate in theTacoma Ledger over the source and extent of vandalism at ParadisePark and what ought to be done about it.Closely akin to the mountain climbing expeditions in this era werethe horseback riding, fishing, and camping parties who visited MountRainier. As early as the 1880s, the Northern Pacific Railroad found thatsufficient demand existed to run excursion cars from Tacoma to Wilkeson,where tourist parties hired horses and guides for trips into the CarbonRiver highcountry.
The best-known guide for the northwest approach toMount Rainier was George Driver, proprietor of the Valley Hotel inWilkeson. Meanwhile, on the southwestside of the mountain, Yelm mountain guide and pioneer James Longmire,seeing the future in tourism, found an attractive site by a mineralsprings on which to develop his own hotel and spa. In 1884, with thehelp of some Indians, Longmire cleared a wagon road from SuccotashValley (Ashford) thirteen miles to the springs (Longmire), where hebuilt a rough cabin.
In 1887, he fileda mineral claim of twenty acres, and the following year his son Elcainebuilt a second cabin outside the mineral claim. By 1889, the Longmirefamily had two bathhouses and some guest cabins completed and wereadvertising their health spa in the Tacoma newspapers, and by nextseason they were operating a rustic two-story hotel. Inner chains cheats.
James Longmire looked to the cities not only for business but forhelp in developing Mount Rainier's tourist potential. In 1891, headdressed a joint meeting of the Washington Alpine Club and the TacomaAcademy of Science, proposing the construction of a road from Kernahan'sranch (Ashford) to Paradise Park (Paradise) 'so that a buggy might getup there.' Tacomans reacted favorablyto the idea. They saw an opportunity to detain in Pierce County aportion of the summer tourists who visited the Puget Sound region eachsummer.
Moreover, it was rumored that King County was sending outsurveyors to locate a route from Seattle to Mount Rainier. As one memberof the Tacoma Chamber of Commerce remarked to the Board of CountyCommissioners, 'We want to be known the world over as a park city.why should we not profit by thisone of our great natural resources?'
As it turned out, Tacomans were not as generous as they initiallyindicated that they would be, and Longmire built the road with his ownmoney and with a gang of laborers whom he hired locally. Nevertheless,the incident reflected how like-minded Tacoma businessmen and thebusiness-minded Longmire were about the commercial possibilities ofscenic appreciation. The idea that Mount Rainier's scenic grandeur was acommodity which could be packaged and sold came to be shared by manypeople in Tacoma and Seattle in the course of the next century. It wouldform an important part of the national park's cultural setting.